Would You Take Your 11 Year Old To A Pink Concert?

 

teens first concert

Is Your Teen Ready For This?

It’s a question I hadn’t considered till I saw the recent story of a Mum in the US who has been taken to court for taking her daughter to a Pink concert!

Are we making appropriate choices as Mum’s when we take our kids to rock concerts where the lyrics are explicit and the dancing is highly suggestive? Although in this case the New Jersey Judge ruled in favour of the Mum’s decision, it raises the question of when we feel it’s right to expose our emerging teens to the raunchier side of music.

What do You Remember About Your First Concert?

My first and only concert was in 1989 when I saw REM live on their Uk tour when I was 17. I don’t remember how my Mum felt about me going, but I do know that if she had tried to stop me then it would have been even more exciting to rebel against her!

What I do remember is

  • feeling shocked by the sheer number of people who were crammed in the venue together
  • feeling worried about being separated from my friends
  • feeling nervous about of being crushed and trampled by the crowd

I don’t remember loving the experience, and that is because I was totally unprepared for the magnitude of the event. I had never been exposed during my family life to anything like a rock concert and maybe if I had I would have been more relaxed and able to enjoy it.

How Can You Prepare Your Children For Their 1st Concert?

Maria Mora has some great ideas in her article School of Rock. Her suggestion to chaperone their first few concert experiences is a great idea, and one that may have a pay-off for you too!

As a Mum for many years you’ve been doing everything for your kids, driving them to sports practice, cheering from the sidelines come rain or shine, coordinating sleepovers, birthdays and cinema outings.

But, at last, something exciting is on the list of ‘Things-I-Do-For-My-Kids’…you get to go to a concert!

Who you get to see is really about how convincing you can be, but a word of warning, our kids are very savvy at persuasive arguments (thanks Naplan) so be prepared!

Some pre-concert discussions should include:

  • what to expect in-terms of behaviour from adults attending the concert  (discuss what it looks like when adults let out their inner wild-child)
  • strategies for re-grouping if you get separated (choose a central landmark to meet at if you are separated, identify staff and officials who can assist and put mobile phones on vibrate and keep them in your pocket)
  • what the budget will allow for purchasing merchandise at the concert to avoid disappointment on the night
  • what’s expected in the way of singalongs (get the whole family to learn the songs, if nothing else it will be an embarrassing story for them to recount later in life!)

I’ve got my eye on some Robbie William’s tickets for October…let the education begin!

I’d love to know if your teen has been to their first concert yet.

Do you have anything to add to the list of things we can do to prepare our kids for this experience?

 

 

 

 

12 comments

  1. Terry says:

    My kids are now 13 1/2 and 11. We went to see P!nk in Melbourne almost 2 years ago as a family. The then 9 year old was probably a bit young but we’ve been to a number of musicals and other events so they are used to crowds and the size of some of the venues. My daughter was nearly 12 at the time and loves P!nk and she loved it. We had seats, the view was fantastic. We had earplugs for the kids. It was a terrific experience and one they both still talk about all the time.

    • Lisa says:

      Thanks for sharing this Terry, it sounds as if it was a positive experience for you all. Taking ear plugs is a great idea too! It’s really helpful to share ideas about how to approach the next chapter of ‘parenting the concert years’ and hear what other parents are doing.

  2. Holly says:

    I’ve taken my niece to a few concerts in her teens, including an alternative festival but she was about 16 so not quite a kid. My hubby is a musician so music will always be a big thing in our lives but with a 2.5 year old, we are way off concerts 😉

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Holly, thanks for your comments, your children are bound to be concert savvy if their Dad’s a musician! I’m thinking it’s time I re-visited this area of my life, I definately didn’t go to enough concerts as a teenager, but now I have a good excuse to re-live those teenage years :)!

  3. casey says:

    I think it would depend on the maturity of the child. If she loved a musician/band so much that she wanted to see them in concert, I would imagine that she had seen the performer on a video, etc. so knew what to expect as far as the dancing. I would be more concerned about the crowd (losing the child, someone doing something inappropriate, seeing someone use drugs, etc. etc. etc.). Personally, I wouldn’t take her to see Pink. I didn’t see my first concert til I was 17 and it was still a bit of a shock. I can’t imagine an 11 year old understanding that you don’t really get to see the stage that well from most positions in the arena (at least in the outdoor concerts I have been to). Great post! 🙂

    • Lisa says:

      Hi Casey, you’re absolutely right, each child is so different and what they are used to seeing at home varies enormously from parent to parent. The worries I have are much more about the crowd rather than the performers too, so I’m planning on some controlled exposure to concerts over the next few years before I have to confront the thought of my boys going with their mates!

    • Lisa says:

      Thanks Mac, I’ve been off the radar for a while but this weeks goal was to reach out and find some opportunities to link-up with the blogging community, and your was the first name that came to mind!Thanks for hosting and sharing!

  4. Marie says:

    My kids haven’t gone to their first concert yet, much to my 13 year old daughter’s dismay. Two of her friends went to Bruno Mars last summer with their moms and I didn’t think it appropriate for her to go. I’d actually rather her go to a Pink concert with a strong talented female artist….

    • Lisa says:

      When I spoke to some of my girlfriends about this topic it was amazing how varied the responses were! We are all so diverse in our beliefs and this is refelcted in our parenting choices. My personal view is that as long as you’re thinking and refelcting on what is in their best interests then this is as good as parenting it gets! Decisions like these are complex at the best of times!! Thanks for your comment Marie.

    • Lisa says:

      I am exactly the same, neither of the boys have shown any interest yet, but my eldest is 14 so I’m thinking it won’t be long before it appears on the parenting horizon! Might take this opportunity to ‘educate’ him on how it all works before he’s insisting on going with his mates (yikes)!!

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